Donna Rosenblum, librarian, Floral Park (NY) Memorial High School, does everything she can to get her teens engaged in reading and writing, and author visits are always on her mind. Local YA author Sarah Beth Durst was already scheduled for a visit when Superstorm Sandy came whipping in. Undaunted, Rosenblum bumped the date forward to early December. That’s when Durst spoke at the Floral Park Memorial High School (FPM) library. The appearance was the sixth installment of the FPM’s READS program, which Rosenblum initiated to bring students, staff, and parents together for author visits.
Durst is the author of the young adult novels Vessel, Drink Slay Love, Enchanted Ivy, and Ice, all from Simon & Schuster, as well as middle grade novels Into the Wild and Out of the Wild from Penguin Young Readers. She has twice been a finalist for the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America’s (SFWA) Andre Norton Award, for both Ice and Into the Wild. At READS, Durst discussed why she became a writer, the writing and publishing process, and her own personal experiences as an author. She encouraged students to articulate ideas, write about what they love and keep at it no matter what. Durst focused on writing strategies that work for her but also discussed those of other authors she is friendly with, and how what works for one person does not necessarily work for another. After speaking to the crowd of 80 people, Durst answered questions and signed books. About 16 copies of her books were provided courtesy of the Floral Park Memorial High School Parent-Teacher-Student Association and raffled off to attendees. An additional 25 copies of her books were sold.
Check out this video to hear Durst talk about the story behind her latest title, Vessel, published in September 2012, also from S&S.
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